Charred Eggplant Salad
Adapted from Zahav: A World of Israeli Cooking by Michael Solomonov and Steven Cook
Solmonov and Cook's recipe does without the lemon juice – and the resulting salad was very good, but its flavor was even more vibrant with half a lemon's worth squeezed in. Include it in an assortment of room-temp Mediterranean salads, or serve it alone with warm pita.
2 large eggplants, halved
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon kosher salt
Juice of half a lemon
1/4 cup chopped Italian parsley
Place the eggplants, cut-side down, on a hot grill or stove-top grill pan and cook them until the flesh is pudding-like in texture; the surface will be completely charred. On a stove-top grill pan this took about 45 minutes. Let the eggplants cool, then remove the charred surface and spoon the flesh (scraping it off the skin) into a medium mixing bowl.
Add the garlic and olive oil and stir it vigorously, breaking up the eggplant, until the mixture is creamy and smooth. Stir in the salt, lemon juice and half the parsley; sprinkle the rest of the parsley on top as a garnish.